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Sensors 2013, 13(12), 17156-17175;

Design of a Wireless Sensor Network Platform for Tele-Homecare

Department of Electrical Engineering, Tunghai University, Taichung 40704, Taiwan
Department of Digital Literature and Arts, St. John's University, Taipei 25135, Taiwan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 September 2013 / Revised: 21 November 2013 / Accepted: 26 November 2013 / Published: 12 December 2013
PDF [409 KB, uploaded 21 June 2014]


The problem of an ageing population has become serious in the past few years as the degeneration of various physiological functions has resulted in distinct chronic diseases in the elderly. Most elderly are not willing to leave home for healthcare centers, but caring for patients at home eats up caregiver resources, and can overwhelm patients’ families. Besides, a lot of chronic disease symptoms cause the elderly to visit hospitals frequently. Repeated examinations not only exhaust medical resources, but also waste patients’ time and effort. To make matters worse, this healthcare system does not actually appear to be effective as expected. In response to these problems, a wireless remote home care system is designed in this study, where ZigBee is used to set up a wireless network for the users to take measurements anytime and anywhere. Using suitable measuring devices, users’ physiological signals are measured, and their daily conditions are monitored by various sensors. Being transferred through ZigBee network, vital signs are analyzed in computers which deliver distinct alerts to remind the users and the family of possible emergencies. The system could be further combined with electric appliances to remotely control the users’ environmental conditions. The environmental monitoring function can be activated to transmit in real time dynamic images of the cared to medical personnel through the video function when emergencies occur. Meanwhile, in consideration of privacy, the video camera would be turned on only when it is necessary. The caregiver could adjust the angle of camera to a proper position and observe the current situation of the cared when a sensor on the cared or the environmental monitoring system detects exceptions. All physiological data are stored in the database for family enquiries or accurate diagnoses by medical personnel. View Full-Text
Keywords: telemedicine; home care; chronic diseases; ZigBee; physiological signal telemedicine; home care; chronic diseases; ZigBee; physiological signal
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Chung, Y.-F.; Liu, C.-H. Design of a Wireless Sensor Network Platform for Tele-Homecare. Sensors 2013, 13, 17156-17175.

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